Kent State University

Programs: Fashion Design, Fashion Merchandising

Address: 800 E Summit St, Kent, OH 44240

Kent State University

The Ohio Board of Regents has endorsed the Fashion School as a “Center of Excellence” at Kent State University and in the State of Ohio. A member of the CFDA, it is recognized as one of the top fashion schools in the US.

The Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion Design and Merchandising was created at Kent State University in 1983 after a generous gift from Rodgers and Silverman, who also donated their entire collection of garments and designs to create the Kent State University Museum.

The school uses digital technologies aggressively and provides its students with access to a broad range of international and study away experiences.

Satellite Campus

For example, the school has a satellite campus in New York City, which allows for over 120 of its students annually to study design and merchandising for a semester while participating in study tour visits to key fashion businesses in the city.

The undergraduate program graduates approximately 200 students a year in fashion merchandising and design, with a placement rate in the industry of over 90%. Some of the companies where Kent State fashion students are placed after graduation include Abercrombie & Fitch, Limited Brands, Kohl’s, JCPenney, Express, Target, Jo-Ann Stores, Inc., Lane Bryant and Macy’s. Various campus facilities, such as the June F. Mohler Fashion Library with its huge collection of publications in various formats, and the KSU Museum with its eclectic costume collection further enrich the educational experience.


One the school’s innovations is the TechStyleLAB, a lab that houses a range of digital output devices to allow for a vertical on-demand design/production environment and create a model for exploring more localized, sustainable and creative digital supply chains for the fashion industry.

The school also offers a Master of Fashion (MFash) degree for students with educational qualifications in merchandising, design, or in a related discipline, for students who want to engage in advanced-practitioner research in fashion, expand their own knowledge base and expertise in a specific topic area, advance their professional career, expand their entrepreneurial opportunities, or pursue the initial stages in academia. The acceptance rate is 83%.

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